Winter Training

The unprecedented heatwave of 2018 (ie. 47 consecutive days where I didn’t have to use a hot water bottle) is now officially over and we are sliding into winter.  This means the “I’ll just Jeff it, I don’t want to get too hot and get heatstroke and die” excuse is firmly in the bin and I’m starting to form something resembling a Training Plan.

With Jim and CJ at Finsbury parkrun this morning

Six months ago, after The Marathon (oh my god it has basically taken me six months to recover from it) I swore that I was off long (over 10k) runs for good.  Then I decided that, actually, one half marathon per year might be good.  I set my heart on London Landmarks (March 25), and although I didn’t get a place in the ballot, I got a charity place from Dogs’ Trust.  Then I got a free place in the Hackney Half for last year’s volunteering which I decided didn’t count as it would be hot again by then and I could go back into “Just Jeff it” mode and basically treat it a fun day out.  Then RunThrough announced they were doing an Olympic Park Half Marathon on February 10th (which surely is the greatest chance of beating my PB that I will ever get) and lots of my friends signed up, and even though I couldn’t think of a way of justifying this one I signed up anyway.   And then of course there is the Southend Triathlon.

In an attempt to follow a regular training plan I have decided to do my best to adhere to the following:

  • Saturdays – parkrun
  • Sundays – race or hungover walk
  • Mondays – yoga and strength classes (either at gym or Jillian Michaels videos)
  • Tuesdays – long run
  • Wednesdays – cycle (either outdoors, on turbo trainer or spin class at gym)
  • Thursdays – speedwork with viewtube lot
  • Fridays – ballet fit and/or swimming

I haven’t factored in any rest days because they seem to create themselves due to those annoying non running related things in life getting in the way.

My swimming has come on a bit since I signed up for the triathlon – the 750m distance in the pool seems pretty each.  My last 750m took 29 minutes but that was a leisurely breaststroke.  Compared with the other people in the pool it seems quite fast (I was quite proud that one man left the medium lane for the slow lane yesterday because I kept overtaking him in the medium) but having looked at last year’s triathlon results it is actually still extremely slow.  I have a proper grown up’s swimming lesson booked on 11th November and after that I will stop the granny breaststroke and do front crawl and hopefully get the times down a bit.

Even more excitingly, I have now got a wetsuit that fits.  But I have also lost 6kg in the last two months and I would like to lose six more and if I do then it won’t fit any more.

The least sexy photo of a woman in tight rubber clothing you will ever see

I have been less good at getting back on my bike, mainly because the handlebars have gone a bit wonky and I need to take it to the bike shop to get them dewonked.  I was supposed to to this today but it is pouring with rain so I am sitting at home writing this waffle instead.

This morning I made a triumphant return to Finsbury parkrun!  Actually, it wasn’t very triumphant at all.  Yesterday I walked far too much (8.5km on the Thames Path with my mother, then shopping in Walthamstow and home from there, then to the swimming pool and back) and when I woke up this morning I had concrete feet again.  My time was a snail-worthy 38:41 (although to be fair, I would have been pleased with this time a month ago).  I took my friend Jim (the one who I cajoled into running the Brighton Marathon) with me and hope to get him hooked and participating in parkrun tourism.  He did not looked very impressed by my Cow Cowl but was slightly more interested in photos of the post parkrun beers.  Our friend CJ also joined us at the last possible moment, sprinting up the hill, looking a bit wild eyed and like he hadn’t slept.  Jim uncannily predicted this event down the the fine details.  Neither of them lapped me, in fact I was only lapped by three people this week and I didn’t know any of them.

I have the Southend 10k tomorrow.  I missed it last year due to having a sewing needle stuck in my foot, so at least I will improve on last year’s finish just by getting across the start line.

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